Indigenous ways of knowing: the path to mental wellness

There are significant mental health disparities between Indigenous and non-Indigenous people in Canada, largely due to a legacy of colonization. Though Indigenous health is legally a federal responsibility, mental health services vary dramatically between provinces and territories.

The COVID-19 pandemic: It’s also a mental health issue

Gustavo Betini, a PhD student in the school of Public Health Science at the University of Waterloo, has spent the past year immersed in studying the mental health effects of COVID-19. His research has shown that, even though fear of contracting the virus is waning, almost a quarter of Canadians continue to report having high anxiety and depression related to the pandemic.

Consortium removes barriers to drug discovery, raises hope for rare disease cures

Structural Genomics Consortium (SGC), the Canadian-led consortium of pharmaceutical companies, clinicians and academia, supports open-access drug discovery around the world. And it’s bringing hope to the 300 million people afflicted by rare diseases and a world ravaged by COVID-19. 

Researcher shifts work, finds “silver bullet” for COVID-19 protection

The COVID-19 pandemic sparked an urgent need for innovation in all aspects of our lives – and researchers rose to the challenge. From COVID-19 diagnostics and treatments to changes in how we work and receive healthcare, the pandemic has fast-tracked innovation across sectors. 

High-potential researchers and businesses around the world did a pandemic pivot, shifting their work and resources to respond to the world’s pressing need for solutions. In Canada, Seyyedarash (Arash) Haddadi’s story is a standout example of innovation partnerships helping to counter the COVID-19 threat. 

Mobilizing multidisciplinary research to support health equity

Many of Canada’s most pressing public health issues are complex and significantly affected by factors such as gender and sexism, systemic racism, economic inequality, and other social determinants. African, Caribbean, and Black (ACB) communities have long been unfairly affected by health inequity due to historic racism and on-going disparities built into governmental, financial, and educational institutions.

Montréal start-up takes the guess work out of pediatric care

Sofia Addab, Jean-Gabriel Lacombe, and Georgia Powell are master’s students in the Department of Experimental Surgery at McGill University in Montréal. During a shared internship shadowing medical staff in the emergency room at the Montreal Children’s Hospital, the trio quickly identified that the time-consuming practice of calculating correct doses of IV medication by hand was leading to potential mistakes and disrupting workflow at critical points during the intake of trauma cases in the hospital’s emergency room, posing serious safety risks to children.  

Nothing about us, without us: Indigenous data sovereignty

Dr. Moneca Sinclaire is a member of the Opaskwayak Cree Nation bordering the Saskatchewan River in Northern Manitoba. Having recently completed a postdoctorate under Professor Stephane McLachlan in the department of Environment and Geography at the University of Manitoba in Winnipeg, Dr. Sinclaire has been an integral member of the team responsible for Our Data Indigenous, a one-of-a-kind mobile app that collects important survey data that Indigenous communities can use to address health and wellness concerns. 

Startup develops device to support women’s pelvic floors

Negin Ashouri is on a mission to elevate women’s quality of life, one medical device at a time. Through her business FemTherapeutics, she created an innovative, made-to-measure, biodegradable, and disposable intravaginal prosthetic called a pessary to help women suffering from pelvic organ prolapse (POP). 

Collaboration with biotech incubator creates jobs for researchers

For Toronto-based Dose Biosystems, a focus on researching and developing the next generation of probiotics brings a hiring challenge: finding and onboarding highly specialized talent. Coming directly from doctoral programs, new employees encounter an unfamiliar environment that requires new skills and different ways of working.

Time for COVID-19 early detection and monitoring

Quebec entrepreneur and former Mitacs intern Azadeh Dastmalchi developed a medical-grade smartwatch after struggling to find a device that could help her father monitor his hypertension. Now, in addition to targeting the one in three adults suffering from high blood pressure in North America, her company VitalTracer is pivoting its solution to assist with early detection and monitoring of COVID-19 symptoms.

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